Au Bon Climat winery started making wine from Santa Barbara County Pinot Noir in 1982. This was well before the recognition of this area as a perfect location to grow Pinot Noir. Over the next 35 years, vineyards got better, Au Bon Climat grew and moved the winery site to Bien Nacido Vineyard, and Block 11 was planted at Bien Nacido. Block 11 is a hillside block with a south west exposure. This orientation gives the grapes a chance to slowly and fully ripen. In 2015 the Pinot clone 667 from this block was kept separate and aged in all new French Oak for more than two years to create a wine of character and depth. As with all of Jim Clendenen’s anniversary wines this one can’t be missed.
Antonio Galloni's Vinous
Score: 95 "The 2015 Pinot Noir XXXV - 35th Anniversary is a selection of Clone 667 Pinot Noir from Bien Nacido Block 11 aged in 350-liter barrels. Dense and voluptuous on the palate, with tremendous depth, the 35th Anniversary is a real head-turner. The intensity and purity of the flavors is utterly captivating. Sweet red cherry, blood orange, spice, mint and plum notes build into a crescendo of aromas, flavors and textures that is simply thrilling."